May 2, 2010 at 8:05 pm #1258475
I'm taking a three night trip with five other guys next week. I'm just wondering what is a good stove to hiker ratio. Right now we have 2 stoves. Also, two water filters will be shared between the group. Do you think this will be enough or will we be waiting eons for our food and drink?
RKMay 2, 2010 at 8:13 pm #1605112
Around this time last year I did a trip to yosemite with 9 dudes including myself. We had 1 jetboil and 2 alcohol stoves. One of the alcohol stoves was tuned for a large pot though (used with a 1.7 liter pot, huge flame pattern, big fuel capacity etc). No one complained about having to wait around for water to boil. The alc. stoves were there to supplement the jetboil. So if you have at least 1 canister stove, it shouldnt be bad.
We had 1 msr miniworks filter for all 9 guys…it sucked!!! The filter sucks to begin with, but it would literally take use 1 hr to filter 2 liters of water for everyone. Take a look at what filters you have…it could make a huge difference. Even if we had 2 msr miniworks filters, it still would have sucked. For a large group, I've learned that a gravity filters works best. Have fun!May 2, 2010 at 8:14 pm #1605113
Konrad — don't hold back. Which filter was it?May 2, 2010 at 8:15 pm #1605114
It depends on what is planned for food.
As an example, I used to lead group backpack trips of 8-12 people, and I organized a central commissary of mostly dry food. My standard was to have at least one stove for each 6 people in summer, and one for each 4 people in winter. Plus, those were hot white gas stoves.
If you shift down to butane stoves, you may want a little more. If you shift down further to alcohol stoves, you will want more yet. If you shift to Esbit, you will want a lot more.
Sometimes you are in mild weather and your hot food requirements are minimal. Sometimes you are in bad weather and you have a bunch of foodies on your hands. It varies.
Similarly with water filters, some work slow, and some work fast. If you are on the trail 12 hours per day, you don't want to take much extra time to pump water. On the other hand, if you have an easy trip, then time for pumping won't hurt anything. If your water has lots of floaties, it will slow down a filter in no time.
–B.G.–May 2, 2010 at 8:15 pm #1605115
hahah you know how much i hated that MSR miniworks…I'm going back to CA at the end of this month…i'm gonna ebay that sucker!May 2, 2010 at 8:15 pm #1605116
Not that people need to be in such a rush, although considering just how light alky stoves are — esp. for just 3 nights' worth of fuel… why not bring a few more alky stoves?
Konrad — coming to CA? If it's So Cal — let me know beforehand!May 2, 2010 at 8:35 pm #1605125
Thanks for the feedback! Actually, the filter that I currently have is an MSR Miniworks. I definitely agree that it's not so hot (ie. infuriating). I'm not bringing it regardless. The last trip I brought it on, we didn't use it at all because it was so much slower than my friends Katadin filter. Two other people have filters, was just wondering if I should pick up a new one that doesn't take a zillion years to filter 3L. I think I might pick up a Hyperflow. Hopefully it's a lot better.
According to Bob's post I think we should be good on stoves. One hot meal at night and coffee in the morning is pretty much all the heating and eating we'll be doing. We've got two white gas stoves to cover that. I'm leaving my alcohol stove at home.. if only I could convince everyone to get their own, we'd be in great shape and probably be carrying less weight over all.May 2, 2010 at 8:44 pm #1605130
White gas stoves are really hot, so for serious cooking or snow melting, that is the ticket. Having two such stoves means that they can share fuel. On the other hand, they are heavy.
Butane canister stoves are a lot lighter, but the fuel cost goes up.
Alcohol burners are lighter yet, but they tend to be considerably slower than butane. Since they are so lightweight, it can be fun to bring one along with a few ounces of fuel, just to demonstrate to the non-owners what they might purchase before the next trip.
–B.G.–May 2, 2010 at 8:50 pm #1605133
@bleanLocale: San Jose -- too far from Sierras
why not bring a few more alky stoves
There must be a crossover, where it is lighter to bring one or two light gas stoves than to bring alcohol.
This group has worked it out in terms of days for a single hiker, assuming boiling a certain amount of water. More people implies more water implies fewer days, I would think.
–MVMay 2, 2010 at 8:51 pm #1605134
>> they tend to be considerably slower than butane
You don't sound entirely convinced. :)
>> bring one along with a few ounces of fuel, just to demonstrate to the non-owners what they might purchase before the next trip.
Consider it in the bag.May 2, 2010 at 9:41 pm #1605154
Haha, glad im not alone in my hatred for the miniworks. We had to field strip and clean ours every 5 liters. I was even using a coffee filter as a pre-filter on the inlet end. I think you should also stay away from the hyperflow. I've heard even more complaints about that one clogging. I heard backflushing it doesnt help either. How about a steripen? I just picked one up and so far so good. I just bring aqua mira drops as my backup in case my batteries quit or if it fails. Total weight of the steripen, plus backup drops/tablets would be less than 4 ounces.
Also, there are some users (Ben does it as I recall) who utilize either bleach, or micropur tabs coupled with an aqua-mira frontier pro filter. I cant remember how exactly it works, but the tabs kill off some of the baddies, and whatever is left over is filtered out with the frontier proMay 2, 2010 at 9:46 pm #1605155
I've been using one for over 10 years now, I think, and it has been great. It isn't light, and it isn't real fast, but it has been consistent and reliable. Yours must be a lemon.
I only take mine kayak camping now and usually use a Steripen when hiking, though I just bought a Platy CleanStream which I have yet to test but am hoping will be a good 'group' filter.May 2, 2010 at 10:06 pm #1605162
I thought about getting a steripen, but it seem impractical since I'm using a bladder instead of bottles. Is there a way of using a good way of using a steripen with a bladder?May 2, 2010 at 10:47 pm #1605167
Steripen should be paired with a wide-mouth container 16oz or 32oz in size.May 2, 2010 at 11:03 pm #1605171
I must have a half-dozen water filters buried in the gear room. Katadyn, MSR, First-Need, etc.
The MSR Waterworks was a piece of work. I had a new one that I had tested. I took it on a 3-person trip. At the first camp, water was thin, so we filtered some buggy water through a bandana and then pumped it through. It lasted for about a quart and then pumping got very hard. I stripped it down to the main element, poured boiling water over it, and then reassembled it. It lasted for about a pint and then pumping got impossible. The prefilter appeared clean. We quit using it and boiled water for the rest of five days. When I got the filter home, I found out that it was not the fault of the prefilter or the main filter. It was the fiberglas post-filter. Apparently some kind of oily residue from the water got into it, and it choked, as it is supposed to do. Had we known, we could have simply removed the post-filter and used the rest of it as it was. Live and learn.
–B.G.–May 3, 2010 at 12:11 am #1605180
P.P. I'm not sure if its a lemon, so much as it just clogs very quickly. When I field strip it, clean it, and reassemble, I can pump out a liter in about 30 secs, which is very reasonable imo. However, by the time I get to the 5th liter, it takes me 5 mins. It still pumps, and it still filters, but it just does it soooo slow. And hence, i re-strip, reclean, get back to the fast pump rate for a few more liters and repeat. Maybe it was the river I was pumping from, who knows? But I did use a prefilter hoping I would catch most of the silt that would clog the ceramic core, but to no avail. Either way I've moved on to better, faster and lighter options.
RK, the best thing to do is get a collapsible nalgene cantene (the 1 liter one). They are lightweight, pack down real small, and have a wide mouth suitable for steripen use. Just treat in there, and transfer to your bladder. It'll still be lighter and faster than the miniworks.May 3, 2010 at 12:56 am #1605182
@rcaffinLocale: Wollemi & Kosciusko NPs, Europe
> Plus, those were hot white gas stoves.
> If you shift down to butane stoves, you may want a little more.
I will take issue with you here. A typical white gas stove may put out 2.4 kW if you push it. A typical good canister stove will put out more than 3 kW. You can get these figures from our Reviews or from some of the manufacturers. That the canister stoves generally put out more power than the white gas stoves is by now fairly common knowledge.
Yes, I know the manufacturers claim all sorts of superlative performances – but few ever believe them. :-)
CheersMay 3, 2010 at 9:24 am #1605290
Thanks for all the comments so far. I'm lurking on this thread.
acronym 5/3/2010 11:22 AMMay 3, 2010 at 9:40 am #1605300
@mocs123Locale: Southeast Tennessee
I would drop the heavy filter and just have everyone take Aquamira. Repackaged in Mini Dropper bottles they weigh 1.1oz each and if the group were to get separated, everyone could still get clean water.May 3, 2010 at 10:10 am #1605314
+1 on everyone having their own water treatment capabilityMay 3, 2010 at 11:18 am #1605340
I have had the same Mini Works since it first came out and the unit has never failed me, is totally field maintainable with a great carbon core surrounded by a ceramic element. The filter does exactly what it is supposed to do, but it is more then a stretch to suppose that any hand held pump is sufficient to supply water for nine individuals and then blame the filter for being slow utilizing a silt filled water source. The usual ratio is one filter per three individuals.May 3, 2010 at 11:30 am #1605344
whoa, i never complained about it being inadequate for 9 individuals…now your're jumping the gun. I just said it sucked to begin with. Yes i said it took 1 hr to filter 2 liters for each for us, but that wasn't the basis of my claim of it sucking. I substantiated my claim in a later post by complaining that it clogged every 5 liters. It would have done the same if it was just me and another buddy, or me and 40 buddies. The river was clear and flowing, and so I only mentioned that it MIGHT have been silt…either way a coffee filter was put in place to mitigate that, and it still clogged alot. Maybe it was user error, maybe its defective? itll give me a valid reason to return it in that case. But I've seen many miniworks act this way. I remember in Yosemite, I had a guy come up to me asking to look at my filter. His was acting up too (wasn't building up any pressure) and he wanted to fieldstrip mine to see if he was missing any parts. I do admit that the miniworks is probably the more robust and dependendable out of the MSR filter line, but i dont think that really says much in the end. I'm not alone in my claims, just go to rei.com and read the reader reviewers (sort them by lowest ratings first, and read away ). There are just many many better options out there imoMay 3, 2010 at 11:33 am #1605345
Curious, Konrad, how long have you had the filter? Maybe a worn or even defective core? The MSR Miniworks is not suppposed to be that slow or that fussy.May 3, 2010 at 11:34 am #1605347
I estimate that i've put about 30 liters through it. Still on its original ceramic coreMay 3, 2010 at 12:01 pm #1605358
No disrespect intended, a coffee filter is designed to filter coffee grounds not silt and other particles suspended in clear water that you cannot see, your filter is good to .2 microns, way beyond your coffee filter which is designed for much larger particulates.
You are correct, you never complained that the Mini Works was inadequate for nine individuals; be that as it may, no had held pump filter would have been adequate, the general rule being one filter per three people.
Your statement that the Mini Works was clogging every five liters is strong evidence that your water source was full of very small suspended particles that passed through the coffee filter and were filtered out by the ceramic element.
Having said this, the filter appears to have worked as advertised and you did what was required to keep it functioning.
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